I. Russia: Leadership Through Better Ideas
II. The Silver Ruble Coin Revolution Strengthens Russia
III. The Silver Ruble Coin: True Wealth for Russians
IV. Economic Effects of the Russian Silver Ruble Coin
V. The Russian Silver Ruble Coin vis a vis the US Dollar
VI. Silver Ruble Coin and the Money Supply
VII. Central Bankers and Silver Money
VIII. The Failure of Mechanistic Economics
IX. Mexican Civic Pro Silver Association
I. Russia: Leadership Through Better Ideas
A presentation by Hugo Salinas-Price, President of the Mexican Civic Association, A.C., offered to the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, June 16-18, 2016, at the generous invitation of Mr. Sergei Prikhodko, Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation.
Europe – including Ukraine – is constantly bombarded with propaganda on the part of the US about the danger of “Russian Aggression”.
The seed for the propaganda was provided by events in the Crimean Peninsula, after the US-led coup which ousted the elected President of Ukraine and installed a US-led puppet government. The people of Crimea did not regard the unelected government in Kiev as favorable to their interests, and in a peaceful vote decided to rejoin Russia, of which Crimea has been a part since time immemorial. This action on the part of Crimea, has been painted as “Russian Aggression”.
As a result of the mythical threat of aggression on the part of Russia, concocted as part of the enduring plan of the US to become the world’s dominant super-power, which requires the dismemberment of Russia, the EU was forced by the US to apply “Sanctions” to commerce with Russia. Russia responded with sanctions of its own on European commerce, namely by cutting off its purchases of Europe’s products in agriculture and industry. France has been adversely affected by the loss of Russia for its agricultural products and Germany equally affected by the loss of Russia for its industrial products.
However, Russia could respond not only by opposing military strength to military threats and applying counter-sanctions, but by undermining NATO’s threats and the “Sanctions” régime by means of a moral initiative which would strongly impress public opinion in Europe regarding Russia.
Let us remember that Napoleon once said, “In war, morale is three times more important than weaponry.”
The moral initiative which Russia could take to dissolve Europe’s support for NATO, counter American propaganda regarding the threat of “Russian Aggression”, and eliminate the program of European “Sanctions”, would be to create the Silver Ruble coin – a completely unexpected action for which Russia’s adversaries are totally unprepared and for which they have no answer.
A Brief Description of the Silver Ruble Coin
The Russian silver coin to be monetized would contain 1/2 ounce of pure silver, alloyed to .900 or .916 purity, for durability.
The silver coin would be minted and monetized in Russian rubles by the Treasury of the Russian Federation, by a monetary quote issued by the Treasury. The coin would bear no stamped monetary value.
The monetized silver coin would become a parallel currency, which would circulate in parallel with the ruble currency issued by the Russian Central Bank. The Silver Ruble coins would form part of “M-0” (“M-zero”) which is the narrowest gauge of money supply. Thus M-0 would be made up of Russian Silver Ruble coins, along with the banknotes and base-metal coins issued by the Central Bank.
For the Russian Silver Ruble coin to remain in circulation as money, and form part of M-0 indefinitely, it would be indispensable that the coin receive its monetary value in rubles by means of a “monetary quote” which would be issued by the Treasury. This quote would be communicated to the population daily by the Media. Otherwise, a traditional stamped value on the coin in rubles would soon be surpassed by rises in the price of silver and the coin would be demonetized, as were all its predecessors in the last century.
The creation of the Silver Ruble coin would mark an important precedent, because at present, no government in the world issues currency: all governments have abdicated from that right, in favor of their respective Central Banks, each of which belongs to the world-embracing syndicate of Central Banks headed by the Federal Reserve of the USA.
The present worldwide system of Central Banking has exhausted its possibilities, as is evident in the fact that 17 countries in the world are now suffering “negative interest rates”, that is to say, interest rates below zero for large depositors in banks, which amount to a punishment on savers. The “negative interest rate policy” is a logical aberration and serves to demonstrate the intellectual bankruptcy of the world’s Central Banking System.
The economies of the world are in a slump and there is not one country in the world that is enjoying a worry-free prosperity.
It is time for a change, and the Silver Ruble coin would mark a necessary change, because a) The creation of the Silver Ruble coin by the Treasury of the Russian Federation would signify that Russia affirms its sovereign right to create money, a right which has been usurped by the Central Banks of the world, and b) because its monetary value in Russian rubles would reside in the value of the silver it contains.
The rising price of silver would translate to a rising monetary quote for the Silver Ruble, making it ideal as an instrument for the modest amounts of savings that even the poorest Russian would like to have: the rising monetary value of the Silver Ruble would protect savings from inflation, while being totally liquid at any moment.
The Silver Ruble coin’s monetary value, given by a quote on the part of the Treasury, should increase with increases in the value of the silver content, but remain unchanged with falls in the value of the silver content. History provides abundant proof that nations that have used silver money, have always disregarded falls in the value of the silver in their silver money.
The only thing extraordinary about this coin would be its adaptation to modern circumstances. There is no logical contradiction.
Strategic and Political Implications
The creation of the Silver Ruble would astound Europe, and indeed, every one of the other 7 billion humans upon this Earth, because it would be a return to true money, which does not exist in today’s world.
Please consider the transcendent political implications for Russia in gathering the admiration and interest of the whole world with this simple measure.
In the simplest terms, an action that gathers the attention of the whole world is of enormous importance politically: for instance, the importance of the Space Program of the US has resided in that the world watches and is strongly impressed by this spectacular capability of the US, and therefore unconsciously accepts and consents to the economic, political and social programs emanating from the US. In sports, spectators watch and cheer the player that is carrying the ball. In politics, the world’s attention is centered on the nation that is ahead of others in adopting new policies to deal with political conditions that are no longer satisfactory.
By creating the Silver Ruble coin, Russia places itself on the center-stage of the world, with an innovation that will immediately strike the imagination of the entire population of the globe. ¡Russia is now carrying the ball!
Europeans would be fascinated by Russia’s remarkable move, since they are now the object of their European Central Bank’s (ECB) policy of punishing them for saving by applying “negative interest rate policy” (NIRP); indeed, the ECB threatens Europeans with the elimination of the Euro 500 banknote, which the ECB knows quite well is the new refuge sought by savers trying to escape the punishment of NIRP; and the ECB has already taken the first step in its aggression against savers in the EU by ceasing to print any more Euro 500 banknotes.
The thinking of Europeans would be: “How can Russia be considered a threat, when it is doing something as interesting, attractive and humane as instituting, once again, silver as money? And why do the Russians now have silver money for their savings, while our own ECB is waging war against our interest, which is to save the money it provides, and which is only paper in any case? Surely, Russia is not our enemy; it is leading the way to a better world.”
Please note that with this measure, Russia is undercutting the moral standing of NATO, and demolishing the picture of Russia as an aggressor nation. The creation of the Silver Ruble coin is a strategic move of immense importance!
Besides impressing all Europeans, the creation of the Silver Ruble would be a welcome surprise for millions of Americans who have been saving important amounts of silver coins. The Russian measure would reinforce the convictions of this segment of US population, that includes the most intelligent Americans. Millions of Americans would change their attitude – from doubts, to a favorable opinion of Russia. This would undermine the “War Party” in the US, which paints Russia as an aggressor.
This new form of money would be received with unbounded joy on the part of the population of the Russian Federation.
The effect upon Russia itself would be simply electrifying: the most remote regions of Russia would wish to see, acquire and hold these coins as savings, because they would not be subject to devaluation, but would rise in ruble value as the ruble price of silver continued to rise. This impulse would serve to gather the remote regions of Russia into complete support and identification with the central government in Moscow.
That some of the savings of the Russian people may be in the form of silver coins represents a revolutionary change in monetary policy: its objective is not directly growth of GDP, which is the objective of Central Banking. Its objective is truly revolutionary: it is simply the true enrichment of the Russian people, for the purposes which each individual may wish to give to his accumulated wealth.
History shows us that this policy has been everywhere and at all times the pre-condition for general prosperity.
We cannot think of any measure – so simple to effect – that would produce so much joy for the population of Russia and such overwhelming political support for its present government, a measure that would create a new image of Russia, which the world’s nations will seek to imitate, and which at the same time, does not affect the present Russian ruble monetary system, administered by the Russian Central Bank.
Leadership is won by means of better ideas; the US squandered its right to leadership by the imposition of the defective “Bretton Woods Agreements” of 1944, whose defects were clearly perceived fifty years ago by France’s great President, General Charles de Gaulle – defects that have led, inevitably, to the present monetary and financial debacle which spans the world.
With the Silver Ruble coin, Russia consolidates its political unity and baffles its adversaries. The eyes of the world will turn to Russia for leadership to a better world.
II. The Silver Ruble Coin Revolution Strengthens Russia
The international monetary order consists of a world network of Central Banks which accumulate dollars as reserves, as well as other currencies considered as worthy of enjoying “Reserve Currency” status, though these currencies themselves also accumulate indispensable dollar reserves.
Russia and China are the only countries that could challenge the prevailing monetary order, because they have the armaments necessary to stand up to the US. The only monetary order which could completely eliminate the dollar as the world’s reserve currency would be the gold standard, under which gold becomes the world’s money, as it was prior to 1914. The transformation of the world’s economy which will, at some point, accompany an inevitable return to gold as the world’s money, will be an extremely traumatic event. It does not appear to be in the interest of Russia or of China to go down that path, at least for the time being
However, the international monetary order, which derives its existence from the “Bretton Woods Agreements” of 1944, is exhausted. The world is in a slump. There is not a single country in the world to which we can point as a model of prosperity and stability. All countries are at monetary war with each other in the struggle to obtain dollar reserves, whose only origin is the US and which are indispensable for economic and political stability.
The time has come for a new idea regarding money: the creation of a silver coin with a monetary value, which can circulate in parallel with “paper” money.
The Russian “Silver Ruble”, issued by the Treasury of the Russian Federation: a 1/2 ounce silver coin with a monetary value in rubles quoted by the Treasury and no stamped face value. The quoted ruble value of the coin to rise with rises in the ruble value of silver, but to remain stable with falls in the ruble value of silver.
The creation of this Silver Ruble would mean a historic, fundamental break of the stranglehold exerted on the world by the present monetary order. It would mean that once again, silver attains status as money in Russia. The creation of this coin would not require the overthrow the present monetary order, as a return to gold as money would do, but it would be an important step towards the return to gold as money.
The Russian silver coin would be monetized in Russian rubles to yield the Treasury a seigniorage (profit) of 20% over the cost of the silver in the coin, plus cost of minting. The monetization would be effected by a monetary quote on the part of the Treasury, which would announce every day the monetary value of the silver coin in rubles: the monetary value of the coin would rise with rises in the ruble value of silver, but would remain unchanged with falls in the ruble value of silver.
The creation of the silver ruble coin by the Treasury of the Russian Federation would signify that Russia affirms its sovereign right to create money, a right which has been usurped by the Central Banks of the world.
We have no doubt whatsoever that this new form of money, the result of a new idea, would be received with unbounded joy on the part of the population of the Russian Federation, and that the political support it would generate for the present government of Russia would be overwhelming and lasting.
The effect upon the population would be simply electrifying: the most remote regions of Russia would wish to see, acquire and hold these coins as savings, because they would not be subject to devaluation, but would surely rise in ruble value as the ruble price of silver continued to rise. This impulse would serve to gather the remote regions of Russia into complete support and identification with the central government in Moscow.
The measure to create the Silver Ruble is not a measure to promote economic growth, which we suspect means little to the average Russian. It is a measure – truly revolutionary in this age – to promote the wealth of each Russian; wealth which each Russian will be able to hold in his hand and save in his home. This is a measure which each Russian will understand immediately and support with enthusiasm.
We cannot think of any measure – so simple to effect – that would produce so much joy for the population of Russia and such overwhelming political support for its present government. A measure which at the same time, does not affect the present Russian ruble monetary system, administered by the Russian Central Bank.
III. The Silver Ruble Coin: True Wealth for Russians
There is one path, and only one path, to a world of international economic co-operation and stability in peaceful relations, and that path is the resumption of the use of gold as the world’s money. However, to recover that path would today imply what we might term “major surgery” in the world’s economic structure. Today, no country seems anxious to enter that period of major economic surgery. Tomorrow, events may force the decision.
The creation of a new, parallel currency in Russia, in the form of a silver coin, to be issued by the Treasury of the Russian Federation, which would give the coin a quoted monetary value (which will rise with rises in the ruble price of silver, but not fall if the ruble price of silver falls) is a simple and straightforward measure which would certainly not disrupt Russia’s economy. We have already shown that the yearly minting into silver coins of 1,000 tons of silver would only produce 0.7% (seven-tenths of one percent) of the total of rubles in the hands of the public (M0).
The question then arises: How much silver coinage should be created?
The Central Bank of Russia controls the ruble money supply in Russia, and through its control of the banking system, the credit issued in Russian rubles.
For practical purposes, the Silver Ruble coin issued by the Treasury of the Russian Federation would have to be considered, by the Bank of Russia, as if it were a foreign currency whose value is not under its control. The banking system would credit ruble balances of customers for the ruble value of the silver coins deposited for credit to those accounts, and it would debit the same accounts (or receive cash) for silver coin sales to the public
There can be only one destination for the Silver Ruble coin in Russia: the savings of the Russian people. The total of personal savings in silver ruble coins in Russia would be the reflection of the aggregate capacity of Russians to save silver coins. Like any individual who is offered silver coins for his savings, the aggregate will respond in the same fashion: it will absorb silver coins up to its capacity and willingness to save in silver.
If the number of silver coins offered to the public surpasses its momentary capacity to save, then the public will not be able to take up all the silver coins offered to it.
The distributor of the silver coins would be the Russian banking system; at some moment, the public might not be able to purchase all the coins offered to it, because the public’s capacity for savings had been momentarily saturated. Since the banking system would only be able to place the coins among the public by selling them in exchange for Russian rubles, unsold silver coins would not be of any use to the banking system: it would be quite unable to extend credit denominated in Silver Ruble coins or open digital bank accounts denominated in Silver Ruble coins. At that time, the banking system could return silver coins to the Treasury for credit in Russian rubles.
After a short period, the public’s capacity for savings would quite naturally renew and a renewed demand for silver coins would become evident; whatever surplus of coins the Treasury might have, would once again be absorbed by the public through the banking system. Thus, the creation of silver ruble coins by the Treasury would have to take into account the capacity of the public to acquire the coins for its savings.
That savings of the Russian people may be in the form of silver coins represents a transcendent change in monetary policy: its objective is not directly growth, or greater economic activity. It’s objective is truly revolutionary: it is simply the true enrichment of the population, for the purposes which each individual may wish to give to his accumulated wealth.
Needless to say, this policy has been responsible everywhere and at all times in history as the pre-condition for general prosperity.
The desire for additional wealth is not subject to a limit. Since the silver coin is a unit of wealth, there can be no theoretical limit to the amount of silver coinage that the Treasury of the Russian Federation may place in the hands of its population.
In time, as individual Russians acquire Silver Ruble coins and thus increase their wealth, those Russians who consider that they have accumulated sufficient wealth will quite spontaneously wish to exchange their wealth for income. They will then exchange their Silver Ruble coins (which undoubtedly will have increased substantially in monetary value) for investments which will produce an income. Some individuals will purchase property in order to obtain rental income. Other individuals will seek to acquire land for productive purposes, or machinery for their agricultural properties; some will acquire shops, or inventory for their shops, or additional equipment for enterprises which they already own; some individuals might purchase gold backed bonds, to provide interest income, if such bonds were available. The list of possible ways to exchange wealth for income, is endless.
The only economically sound basis for prosperity lies in the accumulation of wealth through savings, which at some point is exchanged for means to acquire income. The Silver Ruble coin offers Russians an enticing way to accumulate wealth.
IV. Economic Effects of the Russian Silver Ruble Coin
It would be difficult if not impossible to detect price changes in the Russian market, attributable to the introduction of silver coins into circulation in the country.
If every year, 1,000 tons of silver were minted and put into circulation with a quoted monetary value (based on today’s prevailing exchange rate for the Russian ruble and the dollar price of silver) the proportion of silver rubles to paper rubles and base metal coins would still not differ much from 0.7% (seven tenths of one percent) . This is because it is likely that the yearly growth of paper rubles and base metal coins in Russia will be greater than the increase in the quantity of additional silver rubles each year. Money in circulation in every country of the world increases every year by much more that 0.7%, and Russia is no exception.
The economic effect of the introduction of 1,000 tons of silver rubles into circulation each year – only 0.7% of the total of banknotes and base metal coinage in the hands of the public – would be too small and spread out over the whole economy to be measured by price changes.
Saving is the abstention from consuming.
At present prices, if 1,000 tons of silver were minted into Silver Ruble coins, their monetary value as quoted by the Russian Treasury would amount to 50 Billion rubles. If 50 Billion rubles’ worth of Silver Ruble coins were sold to the Russian people in exchange for their banknotes or base coin money, that would imply a reduction in consumption , and an increase in the people’s savings, of 50 Billion rubles each year.
We cannot know exactly what things the Russian people would not buy, in order to be able to purchase silver coins whose projected monetary value may be of the order of 800 rubles, if present day prices and the exchange rate remain stable. Russians would have various preferences about what things they would do without, in order to acquire Silver Ruble coins.
Once in the hands of the people, “Gresham’s Law” assures us that the silver coins will not be spent by their owners. Though perfectly acceptable and welcome in payment, the owners of silver coins will prefer to put away the silver coins as savings, and use banknotes, base metal coins or digital balances in the banking system to make payments
Silver ruble coins will only be spent in the face of individual personal emergencies, and will be immediately snapped up by the public, anxious to increase their savings.
The importance of the Silver Ruble coin is not primarily economic and measurable statistically. Its enormous importance lies in the satisfaction of the Russian people and the wholehearted support which it will generate for the Government of Russia.
V. The Russian Silver Ruble Coin vis a vis the US Dollar
At the present time, the US Dollar is the world’s currency. There are some 170 currencies in the world, but they are all really nothing more than disguises for the Dollar. The proof is that when the Central Bank of any country runs out of Dollars, the currency issued by that Central Bank becomes worthless.
The Silver Ruble coin would unquestionably be a currency superior to the US Dollar, and at present, the only currency superior to the US Dollar. The Russian Silver Ruble coin would be the best currency in the world, because its monetary value will be a function of the international value of the silver it contains, a value independent of the Russian Central Bank’s holding of Dollars. It would be the only currency that would not lose purchasing power, and the only currency that would be rising in monetary value for quite some time to come, as the price of silver rises in international markets.
Since the Russian Silver Ruble coin would be the world’s best currency, its desirability would not be limited to the population of Russia. Russia’s neighbors would undoubtedly exhibit a desire to own Silver Ruble coins, especially taking into account the ECB’s lunatic policy of ceasing to print Euro 500 banknotes, the EU’s flirting with the idea of a totally cashless economy where all money would be nothing more than digits on bank computers – digits which have been threatened with “bail-ins” of customers’ accounts to help pay for banking bankruptcy – and finally, the EU’S shameful “demonization” of people’s use of banknotes to pay for any purchase over a small amount of cash, by grouping innocent people with tax-evaders and drug dealers.
We predict that the Silver Ruble coin would immediately find a ready market in Europe and in Ukraine, now at odds with Russia.
Whether the Silver Ruble coin would travel in an orderly fashion, through established institutions, or simply filter through all official barriers and “black markets” to Europe, the Russian Silver Ruble coin would find its way, inevitably, into the hands of Europeans, who want to hold their savings in something better than the dollar and their own currencies.
Silver coins are available to Europeans, but they are all subject to an “Added Value Tax” because they are not money. The Silver Ruble coin should not be subject to this tax, because it is MONEY. This would be an important advantage to the sale of Silver Ruble coins to Europe.
The Silver Ruble coin would certainly not overthrow the importance of the US Dollar: Dollars are negotiated in astronomic quantities. But it would dethrone the Dollar as far as quality is concerned: the Silver Ruble coin would be seen by all Europeans as the currency superior to the Dollar. We have mentioned elsewhere, the inevitable political effect upon Europe, favorable to Russia, as a result of European recognition of the superior monetary quality of the Russian Silver Ruble coin.
The export of Silver Ruble coins to foreign countries should be viewed in a positive light by Russia’s government: not only would the Silver Ruble coins carry with them a very favorable impression of Russia, received by inhabitants of neighboring countries – Ukraine comes to mind – but the export would be substantially beneficial to Russia in economic terms.
The silver in the Silver Ruble coins would be sold for export at the current international market price of silver, plus a 20% profit after costs of minting. It would be to Russia’s benefit to mint and export silver coins to the full amount demanded by the external market. If the market were to absorb all the silver produced by Russian mines, it would still be profitable to purchase silver on the international markets, to satisfy export demand. Minting Silver Ruble coins adds value to silver; thus the export of coins is preferable to the export of silver as a commodity, in 30 Kg. bars.
VI. Silver Ruble Coin and Money Supply
Data at www.tradingeconomics.com/russia/money-supply-m0 show that the total supply of banknotes and base metal coins in the hands of the public in the Russian Federation, as of February 2016, amounted to 7,150 Billion rubles. The total supply of banknotes and coins in the hands of the public is the monetary aggregate known as “M0”, or “M-Zero”. This is the narrowest calculation of money supply in Russia.
If a silver coin were to be monetized in Russian Rubles by the Treasury of the Russian Federation, it would be placed into circulation in parallel with the banknotes and coins issued by the Bank of Russia, and would form part of the monetary aggregate known as “M0”.
One metric ton of silver contains 32,150 ounces. If the coin to be minted. quoted with a monetary value, and placed into circulation were to be a 1/2 oz. coin, then the number of coins produced from one ton of silver would be 64,300 oz.
Supposing an initial quantity of 100 tons of silver were minted into 1/2 oz. coins, the quantity of coins produced would be 6,430,000.
A recent calculation of a possible monetary quote for the 1/2 oz. silver coin yielded a value of 800 Rubles. This quote – using the price of silver extant when the calculation was made – would provide an assured profit (known as “seigniorage”) for the Treasury of the Russian Federation of 20% over the cost of the silver metal plus minting costs.
The total quoted monetary value of the silver coins issued would be: 6,430,000 X 800 = 5.144 Billion rubles. For the same of simplicity, let us round out the figure to 5 Billion rubles.
Placing these silver coins into circulation would remove from circulation 5 Billion paper rubles, if paper and base metal coins were handed in to the banking system in exchange for the coins; alternatively, if digital banking balances were used to pay for the Silver Ruble coins, those balances would be drawn down at a rate of 800 paper rubles for one silver coin.
If only paper rubles and base metal coins were used in the acquisition of the Silver Ruble coin, M0 would remain unchanged at 7,150 Billion rubles, but of this sum, 5 Billion rubles would be in the form of 6,430,000 silver coins. If only digital bank balances were drawn down, M0 would increase by 5 Billion rubles, to 7,155 Billion rubles. In this last case, the proportion of rubles in paper banknotes and base metal coins, to rubles in the form of silver coins would then be: 7,150: 5.
7,150/5 = 1,430 paper and coin rubles for every silver ruble in circulation.
The value of silver rubles in circulation, after minting 100 tons of silver, would represent 0.07% (seven hundredths of one percent) of the value of the remaining paper banknotes and base metal coins in circulation.
If the amount of silver coins minted were increased ten times, to 1,000 tons, the value of the silver coins in circulation would also increase by a factor of ten, to 0.7% (seven tenths of one percent) of the monetary value of the remaining paper banknotes and base metal coins in circulation (M0).
The quoted monetary value of the silver coins would then be 50 Billion rubles; and since the quoted monetary value of the silver coins would include a 20% of assured seigniorage for the Treasury of the Russian Federation, the profit from minting 1,000 tons of silver would be 10 Billion rubles a year.
(We mention the profit of the Treasury because it illustrates the fact that turning silver into money is a far more profitable use for the metal, than simply selling it as a commodity on the world markets.)
Due to the inevitable operation of “Gresham’s Law”, the silver coins would be withdrawn from active circulation and placed into savings in the hands of the public. The coins could be used as money for purchases and would have to continue to form part of “M0”, but would be retained as savings, in “passive” circulation. Thus, the “active circulation” of “M0” would in effect be reduced, in this last example, by the amount of 50 Billion rubles. However, variations in the amount of “M0” for the past year have been of comparable size, and in the latest months reported, a change (of 0.7%) caused by the introduction of the Silver Ruble coins to an amount of 50 Billion rubles, would be far less than the reductions and increases actually registered. Thus the monetary effect of minting 1,000 tons of silver into 1/2 oz. coins each year would be negligible.
Table for Russian “M-0” in recent months:
Changes of 50 Billion rubles in ” active M-0″ would be negligible in comparison with present variations in the total of “M-0”, which is over 7 Trillion rubles, i.e, 7,149.5 Billion rubles.
VII. Central Bankers and Silver Money
At present, and for many years before these times, and for reasons which it would take a thick book to document, the world community of Central Bankers considers that it is its duty and in the best interests of society, to direct their policies to the promotion of their objective of economic growth.
Central Bankers must justify their existence in the eyes of the public by showing proof of their efficient activity, as reflected in substantial increases in national economic growth. When “growth” is not present, the political edifice is in danger of collapsing, because the politicians advertise their skill and keep themselves in office, by quoting the figures on growth which the Central Bank produces.
Spending by the public leaves a trail of data which can be gathered and evaluated; when spending increases, the Central Bankers may be able to present a picture of economic growth, based on numbers which can be gathered and analyzed.
On the other hand, Central Bankers are disturbed when the public prefers to save rather than to spend. Central Bankers interpret less spending – increases in savings, that is – as the prelude to diminishing growth.
Central Banker phobia for savings has approached the level of madness, as we can see in the policy of the ECB which is aimed at punishing savers by charging them “negative interest” on their bank deposits. The ECB is now considering a future punitive move against savers, by eliminating the Euro 500 banknotes which savers may hope to acquire, if they are to avoid the punishment of negative interest on their bank deposits. It has recently decided to cease printing the Euro 500 banknote, as a first step in that direction.
The ideas that the population of any country should enjoy economic freedom; that the population should be allowed the satisfaction of accumulating savings, and that the population should not be the object of a war by the Central Banks upon its desire to accumulate savings – such ideas are unfortunately, foreign to the intellectual formation of the Central Banker.
Growth can be measured by prices and volumes of sales – or so the Central Bankers think – while the personal satisfactions of the individuals that make up a nation, including the satisfaction of accumulating silver savings, cannot be measured. The satisfaction felt by the saver when he accumulates silver coins is one of the great satisfactions of economically active men and women.
The Central Banker cannot measure this highly important satisfaction, and since savings can be interpreted by the Central Banker as leading to contraction of growth and economic breakdown, the Central Banker is, generally speaking, an enemy of popular savings – and especially of savings in silver, a monetary metal which cannot be conjured up by expanding credit, which is what Central Bankers do.
The world’s network of Central Banks reflects the obsession of the world’s intellectuals with technology, which is based on number and which has obtained enormous importance in our world. The natural sciences that support technology are based on numbers arrived at by experimentation, and they are therefore positivist. “Mainstream Economics” – which supports the institution of Central Banking – strives to be considered as one of the Positivist Sciences.
However, in dealing with affairs of the mind, “Mainstream Economics” – which is what Central Bankers practise – is applying methods only appropriate to the natural sciences. Positivist technology is inappropriate in the realm of economics, which deals with human action. Thus, Central Bankers are unable to consider how human beings are going to react to their policies. The following is an example of this inability on the part of Central Bankers to comprehend the importance of satisfying the wishes of the populations, rather than satisfying their own arbitrarily selected objectives:
The author of these lines received a signed letter from a Central Bank, which expressed two reasons for opposing the creation of a silver coin with a quoted monetary value: 1. Because “silver is too expensive to be used a money”, and 2. Because the price of silver fluctuates in value.
With the first reason it gave for opposing the creation of a silver coin with a quoted monetary value, the Central Bank unconsciously revealed its fundamental point of view: that people are not worthy of owing truly valuable money with intrinsic worth, and that the Central Bank is not interested in the satisfaction of the people in owning silver money.
The second reason simply ignores the nature of the proposed silver ruble coin, which is that its monetary value will always increase with increases in the value of silver, but remain stable in case of falls in the value of silver. The attitude of all Central Banks is to shun, as the plague, any idea of an alternative money that does not devalue and cannot be created by the Central Bank.
The economic science of Central Bankers is actually no science at all: it is the expression of the value judgments of the Central Bankers, who wish to impose upon their captive populations their own value judgments of what is convenient for their populations, and suppress or even combat – as in their imposition of NIRP – the individual wishes of the millions who are subject to their “diktat”.
VIII. The Failure of Mechanistic Economics
The first requirement for successful action upon the physical world is correct information about the facts upon which we are to act.
The Wright brothers understood this requirement when they began their work to build a flying machine, because they began by a rudimentary but quite effective study of aerodynamics; they built models of wings and tested their behavior. They then proceeded to design a wing for their flying machine based upon the results of their tests and thus achieved a historic success in 1903.
As a result of the enormous successes which industry achieved during the 19th and 20th centuries, humanity has fallen in love with Physics, the study of the physical world. In the physical world experimentation is fundamental and provides reliable results, because in the realm of physics we can endlessly repeat any experiment and obtain exactly the same result every time.
We live in a world of truly dazzling successes: marvelous television, billions of cell phones, the Internet, fantastic air travel – the list is endless.
However, with regard to the condition of human beings, the record is not at all pleasing. Our world is in a state of bankruptcy; there is a growing popular dissatisfaction with political and economic arrangements; famine is apparent in some regions. The financial world is in total disarray. Humanity is not happy.
What has happened over the past couple of centuries is that the leading thinkers were seduced by the success of physics and fell into the mistaken idea that the principles that were so successful in the realm of physics were the same principles that could resolve human problems – a huge mistake.
If we analyze present-day economics and its sister, politics, we find that the basis of Keynesianism – which rules the world, today – is fundamentally an attempt to apply the principles of physics to a realm which is not governed by physics, but by the capacity of humans to choose: the realm of choosing, developed by the Austrian School of Economics and its up-dated version, expounded by the New Austrian School of Economics led by Professor Antal E. Fekete. See www.professorfekete.com
Physics quantifies: it measures, weighs and counts both time and quantity. It experiments and determines predictable relationships between physical causes and effects. The dismal failure of Keynesian economics which now engulfs the whole world has happened because the Keynesians have been determining economic policy on the basis of statistics, a process of measuring, weighing and counting. Then they have proceeded to experiment, as the physicists do, upon humanity; QE1 and QE2 have been, admittedly, nothing more than experiments. The Keynesians have expected bright success from their â€œscientific approachâ€ to economics, but as is clearly evident, they have failed miserably.
The fact is that there exist two different realms upon which human intelligence may operate: the realm of the material, physical world and the realm of human events: Austrian Economics and its sister, Politics.
Physics is the correct approach to dealing with the material world. But as soon as we wish to deal with the realm of human action, we are in an entirely different sphere, because humans can choose. There is no such thing as choice the physical world; it is a faculty limited to human beings.
Physics deals with the understanding of relationships between entities that have no choice. Therefore, the experimentation of physics reveals constants and predictable results, but Physics is helpless when the object of its study has a choice: if atoms had the faculty of choosing, Physics could have no atomic theory!
Since humans have the capacity to choose, economic theory based on the laws of Physics cannot deal with humans successfully. Constants are non-existent in the realm of human action because humans choose and are therefore unpredictable. Graphs are of little use, because they only show us something about what has taken place in the past, but as successful (and unsuccessful) speculators know, they don’t give us any certainty at all about what will take place in the future. Statistics are arbitrary selections out of an immense mass of historic data – all data are historic, as they register what has happened in the past – and are inevitably colored by the value judgments of the statistician as he selects what he considers the important data. Equations are useless and misleading, because choosing is about differences, and equations are about equalities.
“Sociology” – the brain child of August Comte – aims to reduce human behavior to a science, along the lines of the physical sciences, but as one wit said: “Just about the only thing Sociology has been able to discover is – that some do, and some don’t.” Do what? Anything and everything!
And yet, this is what “Economics” today is all about: statistics, the search for constants and the elaboration of graphs. This is the approach of physics to a realm that is utterly beyond the scope of physics. Failure – the inability to achieve its objectives – is the guaranteed result of the application of Keynesian mechanistic economics to politics, because of the objects with which physics can deal successfully, none have the faculty of choosing, whereas humans can and do choose at every moment of their waking lives.
Combine mechanistic economics with the printing-press and digital money the world is forced to use, and you have the sufficient reasons for a collapse of civilization as we have known it. It is indeed very odd that a whole brilliant civilization can be taken down by the acceptance of a set of false ideas.
IX. Asociación Cívica Mexicana Pro Plata A.C. (Mexican Civic Pro Silver Association)
Was founded in 1997 and is based in Mexico City. We are an association dedicated to the analysis of the economic and financial situation of the world in general and in particular, to that of Mexico and of the Latin American countries. We consider that most international organizations and centers for analysis do not offer a correct diagnostic of the problems involved, nor do they prescribe adequate solutions.
We believe that there is a monetary alternative that has been basis of stability and progress for the human race throughout its history: real money of gold and silver, with permanent value. Basically, we propose that the Latin American governments re-introduce silver to monetary circulation, in parallel with the fiduciary currencies which exist, in order to open up new avenues for savings and the eventual stabilization of the fiduciary currencies.
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